Apple has announced M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips built using 3-nanometre process technology for the first time. The new chips allow more transistors to be packed into a smaller space and improve speed and efficiency. The M3 family includes M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max chips and power the new Macbook Pro and iMac models, also announced at the event.
The M3 family of chips features a next-generation GPU that is faster and more efficient, and introduces a new technology called Dynamic Caching, while bringing new rendering features like hardware-accelerated ray tracing and mesh shading to Mac for the first time. Apple claims that rendering speeds are now up to 2.5x faster than on the M1 family of chips. A new media engine now supports AV1 decode, providing more efficient and high-quality video experiences from streaming services.
The new GPU inside the M3 family features Dynamic Caching that, unlike traditional GPUs, allocates the use of local memory in hardware in real time. The M3 family of chips also bring hardware-accelerated ray tracing to the Mac for the first time. Game developers can use ray tracing for more accurate shadows and reflections, creating deeply immersive environments. Additionally, the new GPU brings hardware-accelerated mesh shading to the Mac, delivering greater capability and efficiency to geometry processing, and enabling more visually complex scenes in games and graphics-intensive apps.
Apart from a faster and more efficient CPU, the M3 family supports up to 128GB of unified memory, delivering high bandwidth, low latency, and power efficiency. An enhanced Neural Engine enhances machine learning capabilities.
While the M3 features an 8-core CPU and a 10-core GPU and supports up to 24GB of unified memory, the M3 Pro houses an 18-core GPU and 12-core CPU while supporting up to 36GB of memory. The M3 Max pushes the GPU cores to 40 and CPU cores to 16 with support for up to 128GB of unified memory.